22 Jun 2013

US 'show of force' in Jordan with troop increase

9:10 pm on 22 June 2013

A United States defence official says the US military has expanded its presence in Jordan to 1000 troops, in a show of force as conflict rages in neighbouring Syria.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, the official said about 700 troops deployed to Jordan for a major joint exercise that's just ended would remain, joining about 250 personnel who had been in Jordan for several months.

The Pentagon has already announced F-16 fighter jets and a Patriot missile battery will stay in Jordan after completing a military exercise there.

The kingdom is struggling to cope with nearly 500,000 Syrian refugees, and its territory will likely serve as a conduit for weapons that Washington has said it will supply to the rebels battling the Assad regime in Syria.